"I realise that some of my criticisms may be mistaken; but to refuse to criticize judgements for fear of being mistaken is to abandon criticism altogether... If any of my criticisms are found to be correct, the cause is served; and if any are found to be incorrect the very process of finding out my mistakes must lead to the discovery of the right reasons, or better reasons than I have been able to give, and the cause is served just as well." -Mr. HM Seervai, Preface to the 1st ed., Constitutional Law of India.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Wingsfield Knitwear Pvt. Ltd. v. Deepak Kumar and Ors

Parties: Wingsfield Knitwear Pvt. Ltd. v. Deepak Kumar and Ors
Case No: OMP 153/2009
Court: Delhi High Court
Decided on: 29.05.2009
Decided by: Shiv Narayan Dhingra, J.
Provision of Law: Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 - Section 9
Prayer: Ex-parte injunction against Deepak Kumar and Ors from alienating, or dealing with the rented premises.
Facts:
A three year lease deed was entered into between Wingsfield and Deepak Kumar in relation to certain premises. The lease deed also contained a provision for lock-in period of three years. However, it was alleged that Deepak Kumar and others were trying to forcibly dispossess the petitioner out of the premises. Deepak Kumar's contention was that Wingfield pressurised Deepak Kumar to decrease the rent agreed upon between them. Further, Deepak Kumar also contended that no possession was handed over to Wingield. In fact, no rent was claimed from Wingfield for certain duration when interior decoration was being done in the premises by Wingfield.

Judgement:
The judge decided that Deepak Kumar's possession of premises was prima facie illegal, and hence restrained Deepak Kumar from re-letting, alienating or creating any third party interest.


Comment
: The judge was right in pointing out that on the execution of the lease deed, possession had already gone to Wingfield. However, was he right in stating that Wingfield was at liberty not to pay any rent? Was the payment of rent during the period of forcible dispossession in issue, or was it argued by Wingfield? Was it one of the prayers of Wingfield?

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